Travelogue, Nostalgic memories and more…

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Dr. Abdul Kalam & Me

It was in March 2008, when Cartoonist ‘Mathi’ from Dinamani released his cartoon collections books in Mylapore, Music Adademy, A.P.J. Abdul Kalam was the chief guest. Our college secretary was the first person out of three to receive the first issue of book from Dr. Abdul Kalam.

I read this news in a newspaper around noon at my hostel library & immediately informed my friends. Around 3.30 afternoon, I along with my friends Mahesh anna, Vedathri, Harish and Aniruth started walking out of hostel room and were walking near tennis court, our secretary was about to enter his car & I smiled at him and said, ‘Hello swami ji, we’re walking to the same event where you’re headed’ and asked him you are still here? I read that the function is at 4 o clock?, he said yes, but it’s ok, I was asked to come at 3:45, he said and then  he didn’t give a second thought, he had immediately asked me to board his car & I’d boarded and said, not just me some of my friends too 😀 He couldn’t say no & hence we all boarded the car. Humorously he asked, is it all or is anyone else joining? I said only us 😀

It was a proud moment, that we are going to a function where Abdul Kalam is Chief Guest and our Secretary is the first person to receive the book & we are going to that function in his car! As the car headed, being 17 years of Ramakrishna Mutt President of SriLanka & a 70 years old famous and great college Secretary he was little afraid that he is carrying more people in his car and was looking out to see whether any cop is noticing us, I said.. Swami ji! Why are you worried? No police can stop us, forgot whom you are going to meet now? (haha the same ‘gethu’ scene that you see in every movie!)

Our car entered the Music Academy (Mylapore) entrance, as soon as our car entered, our college assistant secretary came running and opened the back door and gestured Namaskaram (Vanakkam) thinking it is our swamiji who was sitting at back side, as soon as I got down he was little embarrassed 😀 and said oh! it’s you and ran to front door and welcomed our Swamiji. We all laughed secretly at him 😀 We entered the Music Academy hall in VIP entrance, our swamiji said sit where you feel comfortable, and said he will go to his chair.

Just when I moved from the entrance to look out for seat, I heard more noise from outside and ‘vaazhga, vaazhga’ within no time after the car had arrived I could realize it was Dr.Abdul Kalam & he entered the hall so fast and was very brisk. He entered the hall like a child entering an exhibition, such an enthusiasm and smile he had in his face.

He walked very fast in the stage and asked his secretary about where he has to sit, he sat and smiled at all. One of the other chief guests was actress Manorama. As soon as Dr. Kalam started his speech, the very first sentence he spoke was, ‘Aachi… enakku ungala romba pidikkum, naan unga padam laam nariya paathuruken andha kaalathula’ (I like you very much, I have seen your movies a lot in my childhood days!) He said it in such a voice that it showed he is completely down to earth, not a single percent of ego or anything, he never showed any sign that he speaks as a former president or a great scientist.

During his speech about the book release, he said ‘Cartoon is a very effective communication tool.  They powerfully communicate the message with a sense of humor. He also shared his experience as to how his team felt rejuvenated by cartoons, when they were dejected due to the failure of SLV3 in those days. He also advised the media to use lot of cartoons in the newspapers to create awareness.

His briskness, enthusiasm was such an inspiration for everyone who had attended that function and when I remember the moment I saw him, he still makes me smile 🙂

Today when one of my friends sent a message saying Dr. Kalam had passed away, I didn’t want to believe it and prayed that should just be another hoax just like others that pops every now and then. Don’t know what is the joy behind spreading rumors about ones death.

Last week, Neera Yadav, Jharkhand’s Education Minister had kept garlands and payed homage to Dr. Kalam when he was still alive. People are in so hurry to believe something without even checking the facts and to inform their friends which sometimes ends up as a rumor.


Now, after checking the news that Kalam is really passed away, it is very hard to lose such a enthusiastic person, India’s missile man & our beloved former President of the Nation. He collapsed when he was giving speech to the youth of our nation! He loved doing what he did till his last breath. I don’t know why we call Nehru as chacha and why we celebrate his birthday as children’s day (May be because of… hmm no, let’s not talk about him here!). After Vivekananda, to me Dr. Abdul Kalam is the youth icon & he will always be remembered by all of us. His birthday should be celebrated as Children’s day.

May his soul rest in peace.




Khuljaye Bachpan – bonding moments

The memories about my childhood always brings about how briskful I was in my childhood. I do not remember the time when I was idle at home & doing nothing coz of my naughtiness and the periodic lessons learnt from my parents.

During my school days, As I come from school, I used to throw my bag aside and get ready to play with my friends. We use to play from 4’o clock till 7’o clock and then on we can able to hear every kids name being called by their parents 😀 And then comes the sound ‘Raajuuuuu’ from my mom, ‘amma fiveeeee minutes maaa’ – I use to shout from the street.

I remember the day I went to our usual grocery store with my mom to buy Kelloggs Cornflakes. As soon as we reached J.K Store, I’d asked Annacchi for cornflakes, he took a big box (it looked big for me then!) I asked him about the car which comes along with the corn flakes for free, he said it is inside the pack. Then before seeing the car, the hen image was on the cornflakes box, as a kid I was shocked and asked him, annacchi… is this veg or non-veg? Why does it have hen image in it? He laughed and said it is veg and doesn’t know why it has that image of hen. My mom touched my head and said good boy, this is how you should check what you are buying and should not buy things without questioning. I was so happy that I got a car and was very eager to go home to open the package and play with that.


When all my classmates went for a excursion from my school (Sri Sathya Sai Bala Gurukulam) to Jain farms which is near my hometown, Hosur. I was not able to go because of the fees when I think about it now, without being strict or without scolding my my parents made me realize about our situation and made me not even to worry about missing an excursion, at the same time, after few weeks when group photo event was announced in my school, I thought I may not take it, but my mom said to me, this is a life time moment, this time of your life will never come back to you and have me 25 rupees for the photo.


Able to find me? Second from the top, next to the motta boss 😀

On Wednesdays when I go to M.G.R market with my mom, as a kid I have got scared sometimes when my mom bargains, but guess what? I have never bought anything without bargaining ever since I’d started going to markets and cloth shops alone and with my friends and made my friend Manju scared of my bargaining 😀

The day when my mom gave me 1 rupee for rental cycle to learn to ride cycle, the day I taught my sister to ride scooter, the encouraging nature of my parents to send me out with my friends to Goa! when I was still studying in college and later to Andaman when I started working, never stopped me from doing what I’d loved to do at the same time I have never disappointed my parents by misusing the freedom they gave me. I don’t know if parents of this modern age can be like them, as it was love and affection that had created the bonding relationship and not the money or things they have got for us in our childhood.

On weekdays I go out with my dad with no idea where we were heading to, while going in scooter we’ll decide which direction to go and randomly pick a direction saying, hmm.. last week we went in Bangalore route, let’s take some other road today & we head for 20 kms and come back & find a tender coconut selling person at a good tree shaded place and enjoy the tender coconut, anything we had planned to do in that week will be decided while we ride the scooter and headed back home.

My parents were always a good friend for me till now and I realize it more when I’m staying away from them now. I really want to get back to home sooooooooon to spend time with them.

This is a Kellogg’s Chocos ke saath ‘Khuljaye Bachpan’ contest sponsored by hosted by IndiBlogger-Logo-Light-Background-e1350035970796


Dial 1 for Happiness :)

Eeeeeeeeeeee 🙂 🙂 This is how I smile whenever I think about the moments I’d enjoyed since my childhood 🙂 I know for sure my first smile must be when I looked at my parents 🙂 Every toys my parents had bought for me had made me happy. At childhood skipping studies and going out with parents  is what made me smile. I can remember the streets with very few vehicles but more people and lots of shops with are always crowded. It makes one to feel happy when there are lot of people whether we know them or not.

At childhood 3:25 PM was my happy hour 😀 Because that is the exact time my school bell rings to mark the end of last hour. It had bring smile all over my face the moment the outdoor air touched my face when I’d left class 🙂 I can imagine the day when I’d carried my school bag upside down at my back and a stranger corrected me 🙂 And the moment after I reach home, first thing I use to do is changing dress, freshen up and drink Bonus and then hit the streets with friends. The happy hours use to continue until I hear my mom’s sound from balcony, ‘dai… come and study, enough playing for the day’ 😦 😀 And the happiness had continued while keeping books in hands and sitting next to my sister and playing with her and talking to her while mom was at kitchen and when mom asks from kitchen ‘why are you calm, study loudly’ I use to read a few lines loudly and then back to playing with sister 😀

When my mom can no longer handle me at home and admitted me at a tuition, I was very sad at the beginning but later discovered that’s more fun, because there were more kids like me at tuition and when they are my age how can we study without play 😀 It was always a thrilling moment when I use to discuss with my friends at tuition without letting my tuition teacher notice me talking to my friends that I show gestures to my friends and call them outside 😀 One by one we slowly show the little finger and ask shall I go meeees (miss)? and haha what can she say except yes go? Those 10, sometimes 15 minutes break out of 3 hours tuition was the first bunk I’d ever done 😀 And I use to play or chase some dogs for which we are not afraid of and some dogs that had chased my for which I’m afraid of are the moments that I can never forget 😀

Toilet breaks were always a greater time for boys while studying at tuition and school 😀 The artistic and athletic talents can bee seen at toilet walls in upper kinder garden onwards 😀



Boys Peeing into Chamber Pots


The PT (Physical Entertainment) period day was always a smile generating day and such a fun filled hour on a school hour. When we start from class to ground when kids at other class looks at us the ‘veeeeee’ face expression with dancing head with twisted tongue had given happiness more than the PT hour itself 😀

The annual exam holidays spent at relatives house and the time spent with cousins were the best moments 🙂 Getting prepared to go to relatives house even before preparing for exams itself was always fun 😀 Now when I spend time with my niece and nephew… hahaha there couldn’t be a best moment than when the kids jump on me and pinch my cheeks and do whatever they want to do to me and enjoy and playing with them would be the happiest moments 🙂 🙂

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Similar to the break taken during tuition now taking time off from work and playing and taking pics at office is always fun and memorable 🙂

After all the busy weekdays playing games and meeting friends in the name of game had always gave happiness to me 🙂 The fun play which turns seriously and takes a U turn and becomes fun game again.. Such a wonderful moments with friends teasing each other and distract from game, riding bicycle like the good old childhood days  and the chatting hours after game at our railway station were the happiest moments which no other place can give 🙂 🙂


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Going out with dad in scooter just by choosing a random direction for 20 kilometers and drink tender coconut on return was the happiest on all weekends 🙂 Recently, When I was looking at my school group photo which was taken 20 years ago, I thought to see my friends as they look today in the same photo and the result is this 🙂 🙂


My school group photo 🙂


The same group now 🙂 Many are not in touch and not in FB too!

Being away from home, now the happy hours are the time I speak with my best friend and with my parents. I always dial 1 for happiness which is speed dial to my home 🙂


Journey in my life…

When I was studying 6th standard, my uncle once told me that he will get admission for me in a hostel if I don’t study well. I use to imagine how would my world, if I join hostel. First of all I couldn’t imagine that. The love and affection my dad, mom and my sister had never let me imagine a world out of home.

Years passed by and it was during my 12th standard vacation time, I never had any plan until then; about which college I should join and where am I going to study. Rajesh Anna, my cousin, my friend and my mentor told me to join any college, but out of my hometown, where I’d spent all my years until 12th standard. I’d decided to join a college in Chennai & my uncle got me admission in Ramakrishna Mission Vivekananda College, Mylapore.

Before the commencement of my college and before I’d left Hosur to Chennai, I’d visited all my childhood friends house. One of my friends mom casually said, ‘Hey, Raju! So you’re going to be a city boy now. Leaving our place permanently! Take care’. I’d no idea why she said like that & my smiling face had paused for a while and my mind was blank.

I’d not thought that I’m going to leave my hometown, I was thinking that I’m going to join college. I didn’t think what would I do post college, I didn’t think about where would I work post college, I didn’t think how often I will visit home. It all ended up in my tears. I still remember the night I’d started from home to bus stand, my dad took one of my bags in his hands & I was carrying another bag. My mom and sister walked with me until gate, my mom couldn’t stop crying and my sis too. I didn’t react anything and just waived my hands and started walking with my dad. I kept turning back until I reached the street end and kept waiving my hands to my mom and sister.

My dad guided me on how should I behave in a new place as I won’t be home from that moment. I got a window seat and my dad stood near the window from outside, there was sometime left for the bus to start and I kept thinking all the instance I made my dad and mom worry & all those moments I’d raised my voice against them and the days I’d made my sister cry. I couldn’t stop crying. Bus started and I kept flagging my hands to my dad until bus moved out of bus stand.

From that moment I was on my own. No one to wake me up at early morning, no one heat water to bath, no one to restrict me if I don’t study, no one to scold me if I roam out in the streets late at evening. That was my new phase in life which I never expected until then. New place, new climate, new friends, washing, ironing, sweeping room, keeping shelf clean, waking up on time at morning, everything on my own.

I didn’t had a mobile phone to call home, I use to visit a nearby telephone booth and started making friends with them. I’d saved the telephone bills in a empty Mysore sandal soap box & I use to see that once a while by remembering my mom, dad & sis. For almost one year I’d wept my pillows at night by not making any noise there by not disturbing my room mates, Thamu & Kamaraj. Illayaraja songs in the 25 rupees FM radio was my best friend at nights. I use to sleep listening to it just like how I use to sleep listening to stories my dad use to tell me and my sister.

My dad & mom got me a cellphone without even I’d asked when I was in second year. I started feeling better as I had a phone with me and that I can make a call whenever I want to talk to my parents & my sis. I’d started to explore the various opportunities I’d in the city and joined several courses in Bharathiya Vidya Bavan & through a senior made my first debate in All India Radio & was so excited to listen to it in radio after a week. Later I’d started visiting All India Radio, Mylaplore and through Sarojini madam I made 3 programs, two on standup comedies (but in recording theater & being alone & no audience in front of me other than the technician who recorded it), a short story. I felt so happy when I’d received my first pay check Rs. 250/- for the 10 minutes program.

This new place gave me so many opportunities to participate in inter-college cultural events and made me win so many trophies and certificates and made me come out of stage fear (not sure if I’d it after my 8th standard ).

I’d enjoyed my hostel days and college days (which will need a separate post), which gave be best friends in my life Praveen, Vikky, Vijay. This new place and the college gave me new life when I got selected in campus placement at Accenture, Then moved to Bangalore for joining Accenture, after two months moved to Pune for new project which gave new friends and new experience & back to Bangalore which made me feel that I was back home as my hometown is an hour away and I can go home any time I want to.

It was in 2005, I’d first left home, It’s been 10 years now, my mind still wanders each & every moment I’d spent at home. Happy moments needs to be cherished always.



Bring back the Touch!

*** All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living, is purely coincidental. ***

The very first touch that happened between Vikesh and Shruthi is the day of their wedding. It took 4 years for the lovers to enter into marriage life. Yes, after so much of struggle they got married. The couple was so happy that they wish became true. Vikesh and Shruthi had a opinion which had no second thought, it was to be happy forever.

The first week after their wedding they were so close to each other holding their hands together so tight and leaning on each others shoulder as a married couple. It made happy not only them, but other couples who looked at them, which made them think about their wedding day and initial days after wedding.

Day after day, month after month Vikesh started giving more importance to work and got busy at work which reduced the time he had spent with his partner. Closely sitting together to each other and the romantic outing which was once never ending becomes occasional after years.

The days they were close became memories. During a busy day, during much work pressure, when he saw his wife preparing lunch for him and for her while she was getting ready to office , their favorite romantic song being played in music channel. Which made both of them to stop for a moment from what they were doing and made them look at each other.

They sat together for few minutes and the moment Shruthi touched his hand looking at his eyes with a smile, it brought back the memories of their days as lovers. It brought back the touch with the same feeling as their days as lovers.